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April - 2014 - issue > CXO View Point

Merging Business and Information

Puneesh Lamba
Vice President - Information Technology-BILT
Saturday, April 5, 2014
Puneesh Lamba
Ballarpur Industries Limited (NSE: BALLARPUR, BSE:500102)is a flagship of Avantha Group headquartered in Gurgaon, is India's largest manufacturer of writing and printing paper. The company currently has a market cap of Rs.986 crores.

The evolving technology has made essential to be abreast with time and to adopt nascent technologies that allows to expand and to delve within them directing towards growth. Out of many new technology trends that are impacting day to day operations these days, the most challenging, disruptive and meaningful trends are in four areas which are Social Media, Mobility, Analytics and Cloud Computing. Social Media has already taken the world by storm and witnessed the power of facebook, twitter and linkedin. This is one of the areas for organizations to spend a lot to build online presence, to interact with customers, to build brands and to serve as well as to take feedback from customers. It must not be surprising if school organizations build a whole new business stream around social media leveraging its vast reach.

The major technology trend these days is 'mobility' which has triggered a race with time for CIOs to come up with their organization's BYOD policies fast so that Gen Z employees could work with them for higher productivity. The receding sale of desktops around the globe and fast improving sales of mobile & tablets is just evident that mobility is the future of technology. It all started with viewing mails on mobile and now most of the new applications are specifically made for them which have brought another angle of security into picture. Associated with this, are the challenges that have been overcome, which formalizes the policies of BYOD. The other important trend is Analytics that has graduated to analytics of widely available unstructured data on web. It is the latest avatar of BI and is seen as one of the tools that have the potential to make direct impact on business top-line and bottom-line as it gives excellent insights to the management for taking strategic decisions.

The last life-size trend these days is cloud computing which started with a buzz, but fizzled due to security concerns and emerged again stronger than ever when businesses started realizing its benefits. This is a game changer for businesses and has helped umpteen organizations to scale very fast or to reach larger customer base within a span of time. It is a key to organizations moving from capital intensive data center model to OPEX model which is more flexible. Thinking about security, security of data, exit clauses, modalities of taking the data back, interoperability and billing modalities pose a challenge and it is imperative that IT team involves business, legal as well as marketing teams while formulating the cloud strategy and document.

The technology vendors over the last few years have evolved and have started offering more solutions than just technology and has certainly bridged the gap between what is required and what is provided, but there are few areas like lack of interoperability between different clouds and non-availability of connectivity in remote areas of country which impacts paper, steel and oil industries specially, which are still not offered by vendors.One of the very important solution gaps is "How will unified communications work in organizations without a solution from these vendors which can compress audio and video signals to optimize bandwidth?"

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